The “book” is out. Let’s take a look:
DISCLAIMER: This is my very quick look at highlights that I think will interest readers. Please do not assume a report didn’t address your pet topic if I don’t mention it here. Eventually, the whole damn book will be online, and you can read it for yourself. I’m just giving a glimpse here. I especially wanted to see the budget — we still don’t have FY 2017 statements online.
- No bylaw proposals this year
- Policies to ratify include more restrictions on MLS reserves participating in the Open Cup and some numbering changes. That should be a quick voice vote.
- The presidential election is the last item on the list before the traditional “Good of the Game” (open comment) segment. That’s probably for the best. Hard to imagine doing much business after that.
- Second graf is hand-wringing.
- Then more positive fare about the World Cup bid and enhanced programs, including $1.2 million in subsidizing B, A, Pro and Academy Director licenses, plus this note on scholarships and development.
- Roundup of pro leagues includes NWSL and, more surprisingly, the NASL final. That is the only mention of the NASL in the AGM book.
Vice President’s Report (Carlos Cordeiro, presidential candidate – short report)
- Budget extends those enhanced programs, including the Innovate to Grow Fun.
- Governance improvement, including the Risk Management, Audit and Compliance (RAC) Committee
CEO/Secretary General’s report (Dan Flynn, the appointed executive)
- Federation employees up from 147 full-timers to 172
- 43% of new hires are women; 26% of those women are from underrepresented minority
- Sponsorships, sponsorships, sponsorships
- Full paragraph on NWSL, hailing Amanda Duffy as Managing Director, sponsors, Lifetime deal, total attendance increase
- New High Performance Department headed by former EPL man James Bunch
- National Development Center in Kansas City (also mentioned in other reports)
- Hall of Fame is back!
Committee Reports (I’m not going in much detail here)
- Athletes’ Council: New site
- Budget and Finance Committee (Cordeiro, John Collins, Chris Ahrens, Steve Malik, Val Ackerman):
- FY 18 budget (year ends in March 2018): Projected for net operating deficit of $2.3 million and net “non-operating” surplus of $27 million, mostly from 2016 Copa Centenario and donor funds, for overall surplus of $24.6 million.
- FY 19 budget: Net operating deficit of $13.9 million, net non-operating surplus $714,000, overall deficit of $13.2 million.
- Innovate to Grow Fund gets $1.5 million.
- Open Cup Committee (former VP Mike Edwards, MLS’ Todd Durbin, NASL’s Rishi Sehgal, USL’s Jake Edwards, USASA’s John Motta, athlete rep John O’Brien): Modern-era record 99 teams, 78 streamed live and accessible through ussoccer.com.
- Nominating and Governance Committee (chair Don Garber): Mostly worked on 2018 election and search for new independent directors, but it’s also charged with monitoring Board conflicts of interest in association with Risk, Audit, Compliance (RAC) committee.
- RAC committee (All three independent directors — Donna Shalala chair, Val Ackerman, Lisa Carnoy — plus athlete rep Chris Ahrens and youth rep Jesse Harrell): Will focus in 2018 on an internal risk assessment and an RFP (Request For Proposal) for the Federation’s financial audit services.
- Sports Medicine Committee: A busy group of doctors (plus John O’Brien) working on the Recognize to Recover (R2R) program and many other medical initiatives.
- Preparing for down year: Men’s national team off because of World Cup qualification failure, but also, women’s national team off slightly after Olympics.
- That said, in 2017, WNT average attendance was up 10% (average 17,731), MNT average attendance up 14% (32,545, though only 21,596 for “U.S. Soccer-controlled matches”)
- Strategic technical decisions on where we play our World Cup Qualifying matches on the Men’s side limits our U.S. Soccer controlled match attendance.
- NWSL investment — NOT including USWNT salaries, which are in separate line item — slight decrease from $992,765 to $868,300. My guess would be that this reflects sponsors (and Lifetime) putting more money into the league.
- Under National Team expenses: NWSL is projected at $868,300 in FY 2019, down from FY 2018 and WAY down from FY 2017 ($2,390,703). I need to investigate this. Is it salaries only? (Hard to tell, given the Open Cup line item under National Team expenses — what does the Cup have to do with any National Team?) Further investigation required.
- Coaching education: FY 2019 projected expenses $7.63 million, revenue $3.43 million, deficit $4.2 million. That’s more than double the projected loss (investment) from FY 2018.
- Player development (youth national teams): In FY 2016, the men’s budget was about 2.5 times the women’s ($9.380 million to $3.662 million). By FY 2018, this had swung to where the women got more ($5.064 million to $4.841 million — both far over the original budget). In FY 2019, men get slightly more ($5.545 million to $5 million).
Some figures of note:
The budget also includes a breakdown of registration fees, which gives us a snapshot of how many players are registered. Youth fees are $1/player; adult fees are $2/player; pro fees are higher. As Eric Wynalda has been pointed out, youth may sometimes be registered in multiple organizations (USYSA and U.S. Club). Also, U.S. Club might include some adult registrations — I’d have to ask about that.
In any case, we’re seeing some red numbers and declines here, so if you’ve been scoffing at the Project Play numbers, well …
So that’s a very quick read. I’ll do some follow-up reporting — let me know if there’s something that jumps out to you as well. (I know you will!)